BUILT: Sculptural Trends in Clay

October 20 – December 11, 2008

In conjunction with:

Curated by:
Curated by Creighton Michael

Our senses combined with our intellect inform us about the visual world and our relationship to it. Such sensory experiences as sight, touch and memory fuse the sculptural works in this exhibition. Clay, the most basic, ample and probably the earliest building material is the shared medium for these four artists in BUILT. Nikolai Grinchenko, Marc Leuthold, Ian Meares and Jeffrey Mongrain use clay as the vehicle to manifest their ideas directly, thus becoming tangible extension of their individual thoughts. Whether they pinch, squeeze, wedge or carve, each of these men through their art initiates a discourse about the sensuality, the fluidity and the history of clay.

Three of the four artists in this exhibition incorporate other elements either in their process or product to complete their installation or tableau. Materials as diverse as iron, nylon, packing tape and wax are employed, embedded or engaged in the development of the work. Cognizant of clay’s utilitarian beginnings, the artists in BUILT examine the other possibilities that clay may offer, often subverting the craft context in which clay is frequently placed.

How the viewer experiences these works in the gallery space is of paramount importance to these artists. Either protruding from the wall, hugging the floor or existing just below conventional eye level, the specific placement of each work is essential to its meaning. These are not mere artifacts that could exist comfortably anywhere, but works of art, engaging the viewer both physically and intellectually as they activate the architectural space in which these works inhabit.